Seven girls besides a college student, Qurat-ul-Ain, were called for questioning regarding an IED blast outside a police station at Sopore, in north Kashmir, that killed a constable.
The police issued a clarification on the matter in view of the protests caused by the questioning and subsequent arrest of Qurat, 22. The girl was to be married on July 23. A local vernacular daily subsequently published a report alleging the police had summoned nearly 300 girls for questioning.
Quoting Sopore Superintendent of Police, Altaf Khan, a police spokesman said: “Seven girls have been called for questioning following reports of their involvement in militancy and their contacts with a militant commander.”
The police withheld the names of the girls, but said they were called at the police station during daytime. The girls, the spokesperson said, were accompanied by a male relative.
Qurat was arrested on July 10, four days after a double attack — grenade and an IED blast — outside a police station left one dead and nine injured. She was charged with providing a safe house, logistic support for foreign militants, especially Lashkar-e-Taiba’s Kashmir chief Abdullah Uni.
She also allegedly acted as a courier for them.
The militants have established a wide network of women to act as couriers and conduits for them, an officer said. Qurat was not alone, names of other girls have come up during the probe.
The arrest of Qurat has come under immense criticism from separatist leaders. Hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani has called for a protest in Sopore on Friday.